If you dropped a frog in a pan of boiling water he would use those strong legs to leap straight out again. Yet if you put that frog in a pan of cold water and gradually heated the water he would sit there until he was boiled alive.
Well it’s a bit like that with alcohol which can sneak up on you over the years.
What starts off as literally “a glass of wine” to unwind after a day at work can easily become several glasses or even a bottle.
Doing a Dry January gives your body (and more importantly your mind) a bit of space. Space to recover, space to think about your relationship with alcohol and to decide whether you want to make any permanent changes.
2. To Detox
If you have been drinking a glass (or two) of wine every evening for years then your body is permanently in a state of mild “withdrawal”, which feels a bit like mild anxiety.
This is because it can take between 7 – 10 days for all traces of the alcohol to leave your system.
This is why that first glass of wine in the evening tastes so good – it’s ending your state of withdrawal and feels like a massive “relief”
Doing a Dry January gives your body and mind a chance to heal, to feel less anxious as your system becomes alcohol free
If you are in the habit of drinking alcohol to make you less anxious then you should know that it has now been scientifically proved that alcohol actually increases your anxiety.
A batch of lab rats were injected with alcohol every day for a month. The control batch got to stay sober.
Then all the rats were put through a very stressful “obstacle race” and guess what – the control group way outperformed the rats with alcohol in their system.
Conclusion is that alcohol will actually reduce your ability to manage anxiety.
You can even test this for yourself:-
On Day One of your alcohol free month write a list of things in your life that are currently making you stressed or anxious.
On Day Thirty revisit that list and you may just find that you can deal with it!
4. To Freshen up your Looks
This is Nicola who came to one of our workshops – before and after she stopped drinking for 100 days.
Even if you are not up for 100 days of sobriety you will notice some immediate changes – you will lose the puffy face and tired eyes within a few days.
Within a couple of weeks your skin will improve – no more dull and dry skin – and no more broken veins or red blotches.
We make bad food choices when we drink alcohol so the combination of no booze, healthy food and lots of water means you are bound to drop a couple of kilos!
Next time you are at a party check out the most fresh-faced person in the room – the one with a natural looking glow – she’s probably not drinking!
5. To get some High Quality Sleep!
If you have been relying on a glass or two of wine to get you to sleep you should know this:-
Although you get a few hours of “deep sleep” you may find you are awake and feeling anxious in the early hours of the morning as the alcohol leaves your body. Alcohol also reduces your essential REM cycles from 5-7 to about 1 or 2.
Another interesting fact is that when a non-drinker starts getting ready for bed their brain will naturally start to “dampen things down” to get them feeling sleepy.
However if you are a regular drinker your body won’t do that because it will be used to depending on the artificial effect of alcohol to get you to sleep.
That’s why for the first few nights of your Dry January you might not sleep so well – your body is just not used to doing that natural “winding down” thing…
The good news is that after 4 or 5 nights your brain will re-adjust and the quality of your sleep will dramatically improve!
6. To help a Disadvantaged Child
For the third year WorldWithoutWine has teamed up with the fabulous Earthchild Project in a fundraising project to provide children in Khayelitsha and Lavender Hill with yoga and life-skills classes.
Over the past 12 years Earthchild have taught yoga to thousands of children in disadvantaged areas.
Yoga empowers vulnerable children to transform their lives and communities.
Just R250 provides a child with weekly yoga and life-skills classes for a year.
You can start your Dry January right now or anytime up to the end of January – just decide on your 30 day alcohol free window and we will send you a Daily Mail – full of tips, tools and motivation to get you through..
Click HERE to donate and help us to sponsor some more little yogis!